:Concert Review: Resistanz – International Industrial Music Festival 2012
Soâ€¦ RESISTANZ 2012 was an absolute success and sold out! And it went beyond all expectations!
Saturday as it was opening day was a bit like â€˜browsing dayâ€™. As we arrived we went to walk around the stalls in the newly opened large area dedicated to all the clothes and accessories stalls selling their wares; plus bands merchandise and photography stalls for everybody to have their professional pictures taken, tables and chairs to rest and chat for a while.
And then the party started! Memmaker opened the festival with an absolute blast! The band themselves were amazed at the amount of people already there at such an early time! And from then on, it was unstoppable! Band after band, the night marched on relentless, on schedule and on time, with no hiccups and no big technical problems, at least nothing that the audience could notice too much! All of the staff was working non-stop to keep everything going. Everybody was taking breaks outside in the smoking/eating/chatting area in between bands, meeting friends old and new, eating and drinking, walking about and taking photos. Many more photographers around this time too, professionally taking photos of the gigs and the people everywhere, plus the Resistanz Tv crew interviewing some of us. So the whole 2 days and nights carried on in a blur, with the DJs keeping us going till the small hours of the morning on both nights. Everybody seemed very friendly, ready to have fun. We even all stayed in the same hotel 10 minutesâ€™ walk away from the venue!
Again we must say that the organisation of it all was absolutely amazing, down to the very little details like different colour wrist bands for audience, bands, vendors etc and free water to drink at the gigs. Even with such a larger amount of people, management thought of everything, providing everything that both audience and vendors needed and we did not notice anybody making trouble of any kind.
This event is the creation of Phyll Pearman and Leighton James-Thompson. They put together the right mix of international bands and DJs for everybody to enjoy the whole weekend, from heavier noise to more danceable beats. With 15 bands and 16 DJs over 2 days there was definitely something for everybody.
And so Sunday night arrived and we all slowly left after the gigs or after the DJs made us dance again in the three dance floors available after the live bands! No chance of getting bored, you could walk in, out and around the 2 floors and outside as you liked. The venue is an old brick-work factory/warehouse, so no frills, no velvet sofas, just concrete floors and stone stairs, to make it even more the right kind of venue for such an event!
The great thing about Resistanz is that it really does bring in crowds from around the world. We meet people from Austria, America, Belgium, France and Spain. This event is only in its second year and itâ€™s already pretty impressive. Many people we spoke with have the same opinion; those who were there last year say that the music isn’t the only thing that they come back for, but it’s also for the people they’d met the previous year and those who have come for the first time they decided to come just by hearing and reading about how good last year was. Bands also met each other again or for the first time and could spend time joking and having fun within the dedicated areas or among the crowd for everybody to meet and greet them.
From what a few people said across the weekend, some felt that the large main room is now not big enough for the amount of people who attended this year. As for the bands, the main problem they seemed to have was the lack of time to have a sound-check. We are sure that in 2013 Phyll and Leighton will smooth all these problems out.
So now we are all waiting for next year and looking forward to the bands announcements, with Leighton already giving us hints and the new date: 30-31 March 2013!
Memmaker opened the festival on Saturday with an absolute blast! The band themselves were amazed at the amount of people already there at such an early time! A relentless set of pumping, thumping beats gets everybody going and the 3 lookalike members of the band obviously enjoy it too, jumping and beating down on their instruments and joined on stage by Jaimie ESA for one song making it even more special. Memmaker this time have surely got many new fans too.
Next Be My Enemy, the side project of Phil Barry of Cubanate, with Deb & Steve Alton from System:FX on drums and guitar. As their first gig it was very good, although Phil gave the impression of being a bit stiff on stage, but with a snarling and strong voice for most songs supported by strong beats and guitars and they obviously did some Cubanate tracks. More work to be done on this project for sure.
And then itâ€™s time for E.S.A., the second performance we were especially waiting for. All you can say is that it was one hell of a powerful show! Intense, dark, strong, emotional, hard-hitting industrial noise! A mix of all his older material and from his new album, heavy beats and sounds hit you and leave you breathless with Jaimieâ€™s suffered vocals giving you shivers and provoking visuals showing in the background.
Soman was what many people were looking for and as soon as he appeared on stage people start dancing! His music is made to dance and a couple of people from the audience climbed up on stage to show everybody how good that is. Honestly his set can be monotonous after a while, but that is only our opinion. Everybody present obviously enjoyed it very much.
And here we are with Nachtmahr. Everybody loves Thomas’s friendly character, you can always find him joking around and having fun with other people, and so everybody is waiting to have fun with his live performance. Obviously present in the audience are quite a few males and females dressed like him and his girls. Rainer never fails to give the crowd what they want, it all feels tried and tested, nothing challengingly new, but all perfect for his faithful crowd.
Grendel are the closing the act for Saturday. A lot of people were waiting for their performance, but we later heard a few same comments: the voice sounded bad, like kicked into the background, rough, untreated, making some tracks weak and hard to recognize; they hadnâ€™t played live for some time and it showed; their attempts to cheer the crowd into more participation made you feel almost uncomfortable and closing with â€˜Hate thisâ€™ was the last attempt to push things up. All in all disappointing for everybody concerned.
Sunday starts with Surgyn. Not one of the bands we personally looked forward to seeing, they are a sort of mix between lighter industrial beats, some gothic sounding themes and disco even, with a somewhat gorey medical theme look. Joined onstage by Geoff Modulate, they seemed to have both technical and performance issues at times, with the voice struggling to hold some notes, but they enjoy themselves and are becoming very popular.
Detroit Diesel followed. They give a rather standard set, one man and one woman performing their brand of harsh industrial show, with the typical treated vocals and beats of this style, but not enough for us to last the whole show.
FGFC820 then arrive with their military-themed harsh industrial with treated vocals charged with their political thoughts. Thomas Rainer joins them on stage for a version of â€˜Ich bin ein auslanderâ€™. Not exactly a show that impressed us but the aggression was there and the audience looked impressed.
And here we are. W.A.S.T.E. are finally onstage! The band we were at Resistanz for, the heaviest band of the weekend. As soon as they start they throw a relentless set of brutal sounds that holds you till the end. This is industrial noise, bludgeoning and beating you into a sensory overload, heavy and powerful, strong and nasty. With dark background visuals and pounding strobe lights, the band pick up on the audience fantastic reaction lashing out a performance well and truly unique, leaving you breathless and asking for more. Even without a soundcheck they assault you with the best heavy noise, the best heart-felt performance from some of the best people ever met. And after the gig many people were now converted to the awesome noise world of W.A.S.T.E.
Straftanz always have such fun onstage, jumping about and into the crowd, while everybody was going crazy, with Surgyn on vocals for â€˜Resistâ€™ and a few other bands members joining in on a sort of stage invasion. Straftanz are a no-nonsense band, with anthemic vocals and punching beats, very good at getting the crowd involved and will surely get bigger and bigger.
Ultraviolence were the surprise return of the festival. Hardcore industrial beats, female vocals to accompany Johnny over the songs, visual effects courtesy of two grinders yielding females spreading sparks all over the stage. A bit up and down, with Johnny ranting a bit too much in between songs and before getting off stage, but obviously a welcome come-back with all their usual elements.
MindInABox set was plagued by technical problems from the start, feedback from the microphones, drums too loud and bass too booming, and the band could only fight on until eventually the sound was better and they could carry on with their best emotionally charged songs, feeding off the energy of the undeterred and faithful crowds energy.
Icon of Coil closed Sunday and the whole festival with the performance everybody was waiting for. Itâ€™s immediately clear how happy they are to be on stage together at Resistanz, with Andy smiling from ear to ear all the time, saluting the crowds for coming from all over and not missing a beat. He has surely learned how to work the stage and the crowds over the last few years. They plow through all the favorites, accompanied by the whole crowd chanting and singing along, to finish off with an apparently unplanned encore, Floorkiller.
Visit EBM Fanatics on Facebook